Thomas of Celano

Last updated
Servant of God
Thomas of Celano
O.F.M.
Priest
Bornc. 1185
Celano, L'Aquila, Italy
Died4 October 1260 (aged 75)[ citation needed ]
Val de'Varri, Rieti, Italy
Resting placeSan Francesco di Tagliacozzo
Venerated in Roman Catholic Church
Attributes

Thomas of Celano (Italian : Tommaso da Celano; c. 1185 – c. 1265 [1] [2] ) was an Italian friar of the Franciscans (Order of Friars Minor) as well as a poet and the author of three hagiographies about Saint Francis of Assisi.

Contents

Life

Thomas was born sometime between 1185–1190, into the noble family of the Conti dei Marsi at Celano in the Province of the Abruzzi. He received a sound liberal arts education, possibly at the Benedictine monastery of Saint John the Baptist near Celano. His familiarity with monastic tradition suggests that he may have studied at Monte Cassino, Rome or Bologna. [3]

He joined the Franciscan order probably in 1215. In 1221, he was present at the Pentecost Chapter at the Portiuncula. and then accompanied Caesar of Speyer on his mission to Germany. The following year he became custos of the convents at Mayence, Worms, Speyer, and Cologne, and soon after, Caesar of Speyer, on his return to Italy, made him his vicar in the government of the German province. Before September 1223, Thomas returned to Italy, and lived there in close contact with Francis. [4]

Works

Incorrupt remains in the tomb Tagliacozzo Reliquie Beato Tommaso da Celano.jpg
Incorrupt remains in the tomb

Thomas's authorship of the three works on Francis of Assisi is well-established. Many researchers of the early history of the Franciscan order believe that Brother Leo, and Rufinus of Assisi, associates of Francis, were the source of the material for the Vita Secunda. [5]

Thomas also wrote Fregit victor virtualis and Sanctitatis nova signa in honor of Francis. Life of St. Clare of Assisi, on the early life of Saint Clare of Assisi and the hymn "Dies Irae" are also traditionally attributed to him, but the authorship of both works is in fact uncertain.

Death and burial

In 1260 he settled down to his last post, as spiritual director to a convent of Clarisses in Tagliacozzo, where he died some time between 1260 and 1270.

He was at first buried in the church of S. Giovanni Val dei Varri, attached to his monastery, but his body is now reburied in the church of S. Francesco at Tagliacozzo.

Beatification process

The process for beatification was initiated in Avezzano; the Congregation for the Causes of Saints declared the process valid and allowed for the opening of the so-called "Roman Phase" on 27 November 1991. The initiation of the process prior to this date granted him the title Servant of God.

Books

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References

  1. The Life of Saint Francis by Thomas of Celano gives the date as 1260.
  2. Wdzieczny, Gilbert "The Life and Works of Thomas of Celano" in Franciscan Studies New Series, Vol. 5, No. 1 (March 1945), pp. 55–68 says, He died between 1260 and 1270.
  3. 1 2 "Introduction", Franciscan Intellectual Tradition
  4. 1 2 3 Heckmann, Ferdinand. "Thomas of Celano." The Catholic Encyclopedia Vol. 14. New York: Robert Appleton Company, 1912. 7 January 2020PD-icon.svgThis article incorporates text from this source, which is in the public domain.
  5. Wdzieczny, Gilbert. "The Life and Works of Thomas of Celano", Franciscan Studies, vol. 5, no. 1, 1945, pp. 55–68. JSTOR

PD-icon.svg  This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain : Herbermann, Charles, ed. (1913). "Thomas of Celano". Catholic Encyclopedia . New York: Robert Appleton.